By Mark Buckshon
Ontario Construction News staff writer
Ottawa’s light rail sub-committee was briefed in October on the progress of the O-Train extension project, which is expanding the O-Train network to the south, east, and west. All three extensions are reported to be “advancing smoothly”.
On the O-Train Line 1 East extension, the installation of tracks is in its final stages, with concurrent work on the overhead catenary system. Construction activities for stations and pedestrian bridges are in progress, and train testing on the extension is scheduled to commence in the upcoming year.
The O-Train Lines 1 and 3 West extension are also moving along, with track installation and station construction, the committee heard. Cut and cover tunnels are near completion, with ongoing excavation activities. Construction of tunnel walls and roof concrete pouring are currently underway, and backfilling has commenced in certain areas.
Regarding the O-Train Lines 2 and 4 South extension, signal testing is in progress, and station construction is nearing completion.
Ongoing train testing along the line is taking place, with the City aiming for an opening in Spring 2024. Staff training for those operating Lines 2 and 4 is ongoing, incorporating the use of simulators both on and off the line. This program is designed to ensure that OC Transpo instructors, diesel rail operators, and controllers are fully prepared for operations, along with well-trained maintenance staff.
It was announced during the meeting that the city is collaborating with Transport Canada and the Canadian Transportation Agency to secure the necessary regulatory approvals to enable service on the expanded O-Train lines.